Nature clicks #234 - Pileated Woodpecker

Pileated Woodpecker, female  

The Pileated Woodpecker is the #1 on my “most wanted” list for bird photography. It is the largest woodpecker North Americas (other than the near-extinct Ivory-billed Woodpecker). We have them here all year long, at least one pair. Most of the time we can hear its “cuk-cuk-cuk-cuk-cuk” but it is not very often that we see this big guy and it is even more difficult to make a picture. I have never seen a Pileated Woodpecker coming to a suet feeder, like any of the other six woodpecker species we can find here, although my books say they do come to feeders. The last time I made a photo of this wonderful bird was in 2010, so it was about time to get a new and maybe better image.

This morning I heard the woodpecker’s call several times from a tree near the house. I grabbed the camera, went into the woods, and was very happy to find a female sitting on a branch high up in the tree. She gave me a few minutes before she took off…

Pileated Woodpecker, female 2